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South Florida One Step Closer to Reducing Marijuana Arrests

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Criminal Defense Lawyer in Fort LauderdaleDuring the month of June, Miami-Dade County leaders moved closer to passing a proposal about minor, non-violent marijuana cases. If this proposal is passed it would give arresting police officers the authority to choose whether to write a $100 civil citation to those accused of possessing marijuana (20 grams or less), or to take the accused to jail. Current law allows an officer to either make the arrest, or decide not to take any further action (by letting the accused go). With the addition of this new proponent, many are hoping that it will aid with other problems South Florida faces — including prison overcrowding.

Monroe County Sheriff Rick Ramsay — a Republican — is an advocate for the change in law, making the conservation of taxpayer money one of the most significant campaign points. When speaking about the proposed change, he stated, “I would be fine with that.” He continued, “It takes a lot of time to get all these misdemeanors through the system. The arrests, the jail, pretrial services, prosecutors, parole, public defenders, probation — all these entities and people are involved and these cases can bog the system down. I think it’s reasonable to give officers discretion given the totality of the circumstances of each individual case. I think it’s reasonable and could free up a lot of resources that taxpayers have to pay for.”

In Florida, being charged with a misdemeanor possession can land a suspect in county jail for a year (maximum) — another change to current law would make it so a suspect can either pay the $100 fine, or do community service. This proposal allows officers to use common sense discretion, creates a happy middle ground, and gives non-violent suspects an opportunity to correct their wrongs without having to face jail time.

Contact a Drug Defense Attorney in Fort Lauderdale

If you or a loved one are facing drug charges, and need legal assistance, contact Castellano Legal at your earliest convenience. Fort Lauderdale criminal defense Lawyer John Castellano understands how trying this time may be for you and your family, that’s why he offers free initial consultations so you can get the information you not only need, but deserve. Contact his office today: 954-766-8810

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About the Author:

John M. Castellano is a Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorney who has helped thousands of clients throughout Florida. While building a reputation as a premiere Fort Lauderdale DUI attorney, Mr. Castellano has worked tirelessly to develop strategies to best protect the rights of those arrested for DUI in Broward, Dade and West Palm. However, Mr. Castellano is not just a drunk driving lawyer. He has been a successful domestic violence attorney, drug trafficking attorney, as well as all other Felony and Misdemeanor cases.

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